Wartburg Kicks Off 150th Anniversary with the Return of the Fall Festival


“This festival was held to honor our past, celebrate the present and build for the future. Our history was highlighted throughout our campus, we celebrated the present with the dedication of the Dale and Yvonne Gatz Conference Center and we are building for the future with our expansion of home care services in the New York Metro area and our Outpatient Center scheduled to open in late Fall this year,” said David Gentner, President and CEO of Wartburg. “It was a success beyond our expectations and we are extremely pleased with the positive feedback we received from those attending the festival.”

Those who joined in the Fall Festival fun could try their luck with raffle drawings for fabulous prizes donated by businesses throughout the county. And any child who participated in any one of the fun games provided had the chance to win sports equipment or one of four brand-new bicycles, generously donated by Wartburg’s President and CEO, David Gentner.

In honoring Wartburg’s 150-year history, guests could view an interactive timeline displayed on a large screen highlighting events from 1866 to present day. There were also iPads throughout campus playing Wartburg’s documentary segment featuring their award-winning, internationally recognized Council for Creative Aging & Lifelong Learning in PBS’s Visionaries series, airing now.

The day also included the dedication of the newly-named Dale and Yvonne Gatz Conference Center, named after Wartburg’s 8th president and his wife, an active volunteer during their tenure. Afterwards, attendees could browse and purchase local art in the Got Art? Inc. Exhibit located in the conference center.

In 1866, Wartburg began as the Wartburg Orphan Farm School and provided a safe haven for children until the late 1970’s.  To honor these alumni, the festival included a special chapel service and reception for former Wartburg Orphan Farm School residents who embraced, reminisced and scanned old photos from times past…and some even found their younger versions among the array of pictures.

“The festival was for me a joy – for the first time being able to meet and talk to alumni. I truly appreciate the Wartburg in its continuing willingness to support the memories of those of us who spent time there.” said Edward von Koenigseck, an alumnus of The Wartburg Orphans’ Farm School, who attended Wartburg’s Homecoming Reception welcoming all alumni home at the Fall Festival.

“Wartburg is proud to bring together the local communities to celebrate Wartburg’s history and mission on our beautiful campus. We are especially excited to welcome back our alumni with a reunion for those who once lived here as children and called Wartburg home.” said Angela Ciminello, director of development and marketing at Wartburg.

And there is even more planned for our next Fall Festival in our anniversary year in 2016!

Wartburg is an internationally-recognized, award-winning provider of comprehensive senior services, including independent living, assisted living, Alzheimer’s/dementia care, skilled nursing, rehabilitation, adult day services and hospice care.  Its 34-acre campus in Mount Vernon serves seniors and their families in Westchester and the New York Metro area.  Wartburg’s nursing home has been recognized by U. S. News & World Report as among the “Best Nursing Homes in New York State” for the fifth straight consecutive year, in 2015.  Over the past few years, Wartburg has launched an ambitious building expansion program, including the Friedrichs Residence, providing affordable housing for seniors with 61 independent living apartments, and a rehabilitation and adult day services center of excellence both opened in 2013.

Fall Festival 2015 - Future Society Game Winners
Fall Festival 2015 – Future Society
Game Winners
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